Thailand 'One Stop' centers to fight trafficking


SeafoodSource staff

Published on
August 1, 2014

The Thai government has announced a new measure of managing immigration that officials believe will cut back on the level of human trafficking going on inside Thailand and inside the Thai fishing industry.

Thailand has been struggling with an image problem ever since reports came to light last year focusing attention on the issue of migrant workers being conned into working on fishing boats amid inhumane conditions. The U.S. State Department also downgraded Thailand recently on its annual Trafficking in Persons report, alleging the Thai government did not do enough to stop human trafficking in its country.

This week, the Thai government announced it is implementing what it is calling “One Stop” service centers for registering migrant workers coming into Thailand. The centers, according to Thai officials, are designed to offer a legal and safe alternative to unscrupulous brokers working at the borders on behalf of the traffickers to snare unsuspecting immigrants and refugees.

"These new programs are a strong step in the direction of eliminating dishonest job brokers, legalizing workers who were previously illegal, and empowering workers with legitimate work status that guarantees workplace protections," said Songsak Saichuea, Director-General of American and South Pacific Affairs at the Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

So far, the government has opened 33 centers nationwide with plans to expand, especially in the country’s 22 coastal provinces which are home to fishing boat ports.

The centers will help immigrants find work, but also to obtain identification, work permits and other legal documentation and protection.

Keep checking SeafoodSource for all the latest news on the Thailand human trafficking issue.

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